Judge, hospital CEO say Liberty County residents should continue to exercise caution

Liberty County Judge Jay Knight and Liberty-Dayton Regional Medical Center CEO Matt Thornton teamed up Thursday for a video update streamed on Facebook regarding how the county is responding to the Coronavirus (COVID-19) threat. Knight said the County continues to have just two cases of Coronavirus but 29 other tests are still pending.

According to Knight, the total number of Coronavirus tests performed in Liberty County stands at 69. With two positive and 29 still pending, that means 38 were negative tests.

Thornton said there may also be a number of tests being performed at local physicians offices that are not on the county’s radar unless they come back as positive.

“Only 20 percent of the patients who end up with COVID-19 virus end up needing medical care beyond what they can treat at home. If you think you have Coronavirus, reach out to your medical provider and they can do the testing through their offices,” said Thornton, adding that he fully expects the numbers to go up.

Thornton said Liberty-Dayton Regional Medical Center continues to prepare for a surge in patients. He encouraged people to take steps to ensure their physical and mental health.

“Part of your immunity comes from being well rested. Getting the right nutrients, whether that is from eating right. There are herbal medicines that can help supplement,” he said. “We want you to feel good. This is an invisible threat. It’s not like a hurricane where you can look out the window and see all this going on around you. We don’t see that. It feels unnatural for us to want to be away from people.”

He encouraged people to continue practicing social distancing while also getting outside and enjoying the beautiful spring weather.

“Know that what you are doing now is protecting yourself 2-3 weeks from now. You may not see symptoms for 7-14 days,” he said.

Knight said he is hoping to take a few days off from the daily updates to enjoy time with his family, but promises he will post new information as it is warranted. He encourages everyone to show gratitude for the grocery store workers who are keeping the shelves stocked and the first responders who are maintaining peace and order.

“You don’t have to stop and talk but just wave at them,” Knight said.


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